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Pancreas Cancer Surgery

Question: Is radiation or chemotherapy necessary after multiple organ cancer surgery? A close relative of mine recently had surgery for what was (apparently) secondary liver cancer, and during the surgery they removed his gallbladder, spleen, half of his liver and a third of his pancreas. The doctors said they think they got all of the cancer out of him, but doesn't he also need radiation or some other kind of treatment to prevent it from coming back, since it had already spread to other organs? How likely is it he's been cured just by surgery?

Answer: Radiation and chemo would be a cautionary measure to make sure that cells that escaped get killed, as it cannot be detected if it is only a few cells. The aim of radiation and chemo is to kill sick cells without killing the "host", hoping that the person is strong enough to survive the treatment. Surgery could only remove large enough tumors to be detectable, and as it is secondary already, there is a chance that the bad guys are all around.

Pancreas Cancer Surgery News

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